Recurrent Airway Obstruction (RAO), also called severe asthma or heaves, is a chronic disease in adult horses caused by aeroallergens from straw or hay. Disturbances in hemostasis (intensified coagulation and depressed fibrinolysis) are considered one of the prominent reasons of inflammatory process, injury and dysfunction of the lungs. The aim of the study was to evaluate chosen parameters of hemostasis in horses with active form of RAO. Ten RAO-horses (group R) and ten healthy horses (group C) were exposed to straw and hay allergen challenge. The prothrombin time (PT), activated partial thromboplastin time (aPTT), thrombin time (TT), fibrinogen concentration (Fb), stabilized fibrin degradation product (d-dimer), antithrombin (AT), protein C and coagulation factors II through XII were assessed in plasma obtained from blood of all the horses. Exposure to aeroallergens resulted in prolongation of aPTT in both groups of animals; it was evident in the group R and moderate in the group C. There were no differences in PT and TT. Concentrations of fibrinogen and d-dimer and activity of protein C in both groups were increased but lay within or near to reference values. The activity of AT was depressed in RAO-horses. All exposed horses showed increased activity of coagulation factors II, VIII and X but they had no changes in activity of factor V. Factors VII and XII displayed a reduction in activity. The decrease in factor IX activity was noted in the group C only. Various changes were observed in activity of factor XI; in horses with RAO it was elevated but in healthy horses it was declined. The changes of the parameters tested in RAO-horses indicate the involvement of coagulation and fibrinolysis which apparently remained under control of efficient and active mechanisms of general hemostasis.
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